Postgraduate study

Classical Art and Archaeology MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Classical Art and Archaeology

This programme studies the ancient Greek and Roman worlds from the Iron Age to the late Roman and early Christian period through their material remains including sculpture, funerary art, topography and visual cultures.

Focusing on the ancient Mediterranean world, broadly defined, you’ll explore not simply the archaeology of Greece and Rome but also the Near East and north-western Europe.

Through our interdisciplinary approach, you’ll also be able to work with staff from all areas of the School. Several members of classics have ongoing excavations in Italy, Georgia and Macedonia, which students are welcome to attend.

The programme aims to familiarise you with the various methods used in the study of classics, enabling you to work in a manner that is theoretically and methodologically engaged.

We offer a range of courses, which has been designed to reflect the research interests of our lecturers and help you develop a particular topic of interest for your dissertation.

You will complete one compulsory course and select a further three skills courses and an additional two options from a wide range on offer, followed by a dissertation.

The compulsory course is:

  • Skills and Methods in Classics

Option courses previously offered include those listed below. Option courses change from year to year and those available when you start your studies may be different from those shown in the list:

  • Archaeology of the Roman Economy
  • Classical Greek Sculpture
  • Constantinople: The History of a Medieval Megalopolis from Constantine the Great to Suleyman the Magnificent
  • Space, Place and Time: the archaeology of built environments
  • Archaeological Illustration
  • Principles of GIS for Archaeologists
  • Byzantine Archaeology: The archaeology of the Byzantine empire and its neighbours AD 500-850.
  • Conflict archaeology: materialities of violence
  • Bronze Age Civilisations of the Near East and Greece
  • Etruscan Italy, 1000 - 300 BC
  • Gallia from the Third Century BC to Augustus
  • Ritual and Monumentality in North-West Europe: Mid-6th to Mid-3rd Millennium BC
  • The Hellenistic City
  • A Period of Ancient History 1
  • A Period of Ancient History 2
  • Byzantine Text Seminar 1
  • A Topic in Late Antique and Byzantine History 1

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScClassical Art and Archaeology1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2019/20
MScClassical Art and Archaeology2 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2019/20

The programme aims to:

  • provide students with the intellectual background, training and support necessary for the conduct and critical assessment of research in Classical Art and Archaeology
  • provide students with advanced knowledge of and competency in a specific area of Classics
  • familiarise students with various methods used in the study of Classical Art and Archaeology and enable them to work in a manner that is theoretically and methodologically engaged
  • equip students with knowledge of Greek and/or Roman artefacts and their interpretation through study of original objects and monuments and careful analysis of secondary literature
  • develop and test the ability of students to formulate and sustain a substantial piece of research in Classical Art and Archaeology

Our students view the programme and a graduate degree from Edinburgh as an advanced qualification valued and respected by many employers, others are interested in pursuing long-term academic careers and therefore consider the MSc as preparation for a PhD.

The programme provides a toolkit of transferable skills in organisation, research and analysis that will be highly prized in any field of work. This programme can form the stepping stone to many career options, such as further academic research, law, museum and art curation, literary translation or analysis, education or public heritage.

Recent graduates in Classics are now putting their skills to use as tutors, archivists, writers, editors and civil servants.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, a minimum US 3.25 GPA or its international equivalent, in a subject related to this programme, preferably Classics, Classical Civilization, Ancient History or Classical Archaeology.*

We will also consider an honours degree in another subject if your personal statement demonstrates how you are equipped to undertake the programme.

(*Revised 8 November 2019 to include GPA requirement)

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 20 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScClassical Art and Archaeology1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
MScClassical Art and Archaeology2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

Featured funding

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments. The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on your programme, the duration of your studies, and your residency status. (Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.)

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • School of History, Classics & Archaeology
  • Graduate School Office, Room 2.29, William Robertson Wing
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG
Programme start date Application deadline
14 September 2020 3 August 2020

If you are applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible.

You must submit one reference with your application.

Please read the application guidance for more information:

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of History, Classics & Archaeology
  • Graduate School Office, Room 2.29, William Robertson Wing
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG